Mohanty is a Delhi based artist whose practice ranges from oil painting, video and performance. He is also part of the WALA collective with artist Sujith Mallick and curator Akansha Rastogi. He has recently moved into working in a mode that is curatorial, focusing more on working on collaborative projects with other artists.
While Partibartana Maohanty’s works might be triggered by everyday experiences –news articles on the internet, encounters with different people, travels around the city and the world, and academic conversations – his work is primarily research based containing within it several references to works of other artists and scholars. As he himself notes “I don’t have a specific departure point, as any random everyday conversation, insinuation, hint or encounter can take the lead in my work.” He then draws references and builds a complex network of associated objects/stories which form the base of his work. He is very interested in ideas of simultaneity, multiplicity and event, which he explores through the possibilities offered by video and performance.
While he has had a long studio based practice working with the traditional genre of portraiture with oil paint on canvas, his recent departures have been more towards experimental video works. Crisis is a theme that he repetitively engages with across all his works, both as an act or incident and as a psychological and emotional space. He asks as to how ‘crisis’ has become a potential site for intellectual and creative thinking, and how it produces experience and knowledge.